Thursday, November 17, 2011

Small is the new big (but it's still hard to find)

Charlie Mitchell, in a recent Clarion-Ledger article, talks of a new movement to bring local back to food production (and purchasing). I was riding home from a meeting in Laurel down Hwy. 15 yesterday and passed many "farms" - and as Mr. Mitchell points out many of them appeared to be merely acreage. But there were quite a few signs of "buy honey here," "fresh eggs on Tuesday," and my personal favorite, "Please don't pick pecans from this tree."

The problem is finding these places as a consumer. Even in Mitchell's article, he doesn't give one example of local Mississippi farm that would fit in the new locavore movement. After much searching last year, I found a farm near Madison that would let me purchase grass-fed long as I bought half the cow.

Even in the example that Mitchell gave, Polyface Farms, the food-sales emphasis is more on selling to restaurants than to locals. In order to effect a change from Big Food, as it is often described, we have to find a better way to market and educate folks about Little Food (starting with making it much easier to find and purchase)!

p.s. If you are in the state of Mississippi and you sell local food goods or produce, please leave your contact information here. I will start a master list!

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